Publisher Content Policies for Google Play Books

For the purposes of these Content Policies, the terms 'Book' and 'Books' apply to both eBook and Audiobook content.

Content Policies

Our content policies play an important role in ensuring a positive experience for both our users and publishing partners. Please join us in this effort by respecting these guidelines. We may make exceptions to these policies based on artistic, educational, historical, documentary or scientific considerations, or where there are other substantial benefits to the public. These policies are subject to change, so please check back for updates. Please also refer to Google Play Terms of Service for more information.

Here are our policies:

Spam and malware
Please keep Google Play spam and malware free. Spam includes, but is not limited to, unwanted promotional or commercial content and unwanted or mass solicitation. We don't allow the transmission of malware, viruses or anything that may disrupt the service or harm others. Spam includes, but is not limited to:

  • Unwanted promotional or commercial content
  • Content that can be easily found online for free

Public domain content
Multiple versions of the same book confuse our users and provide little distinguishing value. Due to its widespread duplication, books containing public domain material are no longer accepted, except from select partners.

Non-Exclusive Content Deliveries
Google sometimes receives the same book from multiple parties, some or all of whom may have publication rights for the book. Google can't mediate potential rights conflicts between authors, publishers and other parties. But we try to err on the side of caution in avoiding unauthorised copies and we may reject duplicate copies of the same book, as multiple versions of the same book confuse our users.

If you believe another party is publishing your content without your authorisation, please read more about Google’s copyright policies.

Misleading and disappointing content
Don't provide content that misleads customers and/or provides a poor user experience. Content that consistently receives user complaints may be reviewed. Material that we don't permit includes, but isn't limited to, the following examples:

  • Books that could be easily mistaken for apps or other forms of digital content
  • Samples whose sole purpose is to advertise or drive purchase of other books
  • Metadata that is confusingly similar to existing books, including misleading titles, authors, descriptions or covers, or that may cause confusion as to the format of the Book
  • Books with quality issues in the content file(s) that render the content difficult to understand
  • Machine-read audio content that can clearly be identified as non-human

Violent, Threatening or Disgusting Materials
Incitement to violence or terrorism is not permitted. This includes materials that are intended to harass or which threaten to cause serious physical injury or death to an individual or rally support to physically harm others. In addition, we will not allow extremely graphically violent or scatological materials.

Hate Speech
Content that promotes hate, violence or genocide towards any identifiable or protected group or individual is not permitted. Protected groups and individuals include those based on race or ethnicity, nationality (including citizenship), religion, disability, gender, age, veteran status, sexual orientation or gender identity.

Sexually explicit material


  • Images of nudity with educational, artistic, historical or documentary value
  • Sexually explicit content

Although these types of sexually explicit materials are permitted, we do require that publishers mark their content as being "For mature audiences" on the book's Settings tab in the Partner Centrer.

Not permitted

  • Images of nudity with no educational, artistic, historical or documentary value
  • Pornographic text
  • Sexually explicit terms in titles, subtitles or descriptions
  • Sexually explicit excerpts in descriptions
  • Sexually explicit text depicting extreme sexual acts such as acts of paedophilia or sex with animals
  • Content that drives traffic to commercial pornographic video sites

Please note that we may make exceptions based on artistic, educational, historical, documentary or scientific considerations, or where there are other substantial benefits to the public.

Child safety
Google has a zero-tolerance policy against child sexual abuse imagery. We strictly prohibit the use of Google Play to create, possess or distribute child sexual abuse imagery. Be advised that we work closely with the police. We will report purveyors of child exploitation and any content promoting these activities will be removed.

Personal and Confidential Information
Don't share personal or confidential information. We prohibit unauthorised selling or distribution of private and confidential information, such as credit card details, National Insurance numbers, driver's and other licence numbers or any other information that is not publicly accessible. Bear in mind that, in most cases, information that is already available elsewhere on the Internet or in public records is not considered to be private or confidential under our policies.

Illegal Activities
Don't engage in unlawful activities on Google Play. If we are notified of unlawful activities, we will take appropriate action, which may include removing access to our products, suspending your Google Account or reporting you to the relevant authorities.

Respect copyright laws. We will respond to clear notices of alleged copyright infringement. Repeated infringement of intellectual property rights, including copyright, will result in account termination. Read more about Google’s copyright policies.

Policy Enforcement

Google receives reports of policy violations through the "Report Abuse" button found in our product. Actions we may take include:

  • Removing the material
  • Disabling your access to one or more Google products
  • Deleting your Google account
  • Reporting illegal materials to appropriate law enforcement authorities
  • Debiting your account to cover customer refunds

When an eBook is undergoing content review for potential violation of our Content Policy, we may temporarily disable preview in both on Google Play and Google Books search.

Just because a user disagrees with certain material or finds it to be inappropriate doesn't mean that we'll remove it or take other action. We understand that people may have many different points of view and we take this into consideration when reviewing reports of abuse.

Google reserves the right not to sell any book submitted to Google Play at any time, and at its sole discretion.

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